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review 2017-03-14 15:23
Fantasy tale which is not always clear on plot but quite pretty looking
Arclight - Brandon S Graham Arclight - Brandon S Graham



Arclight works for the bloodless Lady Kinga who has lost her body to an alien being. Blood is used to create magic. Others discover that the false Lady Kinga is not what she seems. Other than that, there's not a lot that goes on.


It is not always clear what is going on but it's nicely-produced. A little too esoteric for my liking


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review 2014-06-30 00:00
Arclight - Josin L. McQuein This was more than what I expected! That ending was insane. Definitely enjoyed this.

I am a fan of Josin L. McQuein after reading her novel Premeditated. This did not disappoint at all.

This story follows Marina in a sort of post-apocalyptic society that lives under the Arclight. The world is split into two with a middle ground: light, dark and grey. Marina was saved from the Grey by the people in the Arclight. She lives in the Arclight with several other people. The Arclight is the last refuge in a post-apocalyptic world consumed by terrifying creatures called the Fade. Marina doesn't remember who she is, where she came from, or how she survived. All she really knows is that the Fade want her.

After an attack by the Fade, Marina is recognized by one of them and her world begins to collapse. The Fade tell Marina the truth about who she is and what happened to her. Marina knowing she was an outsider never thought she'd be that much of an outsider compared to everyone else.

I absolutely love the idea of sacrifice that took place when Marina was saved, especially when the people knew who she was. At the same time I absolutely hated Honoria for her vendetta to seek revenge. It did nothing but harm people and make her a heartless brute. Tobin was a very interesting guy for me. I loved him and hated him all at once because he was so wishy-washy throughout the whole story. One minute he hated her the next he liked her and at the end he was still the same way.

The love triangle between Marina, Tobin and the Fade was all too funny to me. The idea of Marina loving of a Fade, who is supposed to be evil, struck me as crazy, but learning the truth its understandable. Tobin and Marina seemed great but Tobin never knew what he wanted.

Overall, the story started off slow for me, but ended on point. I'm excited to see what happens next for the people in the Arclight and if anything will change between the humans and Fade.
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review 2014-03-01 15:00
Them pretty covers tell lies
Arclight - Josin L. McQuein

**This review has also been posted on Tangled in Pages


Arclight was one of my most anticipated reads of 2013 and after I got the book, I kind of shelved it and forgot about it. That is until I got my eyes on the sequel. At this point I hadn’t read any reviews of Arclight so I dove into the book knowing nothing but the synopsis. If I had bothered with the reviews, I probably wouldn’t have so much as bought this book because.. love triangle alert. You know what the sad thing is though? The love triangle isn’t actually my main problem with this book. I loved it for the first 60 or so percent. This was an assured 4 star read until then and I was flying through the pages. 


The book opens with an attack by the Fade. At this point we don’t know much about anything except that light is safety because the Fade are allergic to it and that our MC suffers from amnesia. She remembers nothing from 'before' and she also happens to be the only person to have survived the Fade. People died to rescue her from the grey. She represents hope to many, hope that there is still a world outside the arclight but at the same time, she also represents the death of loved ones to certain kids. There are rumors about her being fade proof but they don’t work in her favor. Kids in her class despise her and are constantly getting in her face.


Marina is a pretty decent character. She didn’t actually annoy me. For the most part she isn’t actually stupid. It’s hard to actually talk about her because I don't actually have anything to say. Her character made no significant impact on me. She was realistic and well nothing about her shines out. She is dull as far as characters I’ve encountered go. I mean the twist that came later on? I guessed it so far in the beginning it’s ridiculous. The point I am trying to make here is that Marina was neither a good or bad character. She was just decent. She was easy to follow and you could understand her actions. Also she did not go on and on about how Tobin was absolutely gorgeous (I still have no idea whether he is or not).


Now Tobin, Tobin was someone who grabbed my attention. He may have been passive aggressive in the beginning. Hating her but also saving her at same time but I couldn’t help but like him. Marina is the reason why his father isn’t alive yet he is the one that helps her instead of all the other kids. He has more reason to hate her than they do but he decides to save her life. Before we even go anywhere with this, it wasn’t insta love, no he hadn’t decided he loved her and hence decided to save her, he saved her because that is what his father would have wanted. Tobin feels very real to me, he clings on to hope that his father is alive and he also tends to turn into a rage beast when someone says something about his father. It seems childish and angsty, but he lost his only parent, give the guy a break. It’s healthy to express anger. It’s one of the stages of grief. 


The romance (before the love triangle was thrown in) was well developed. It could definitely read like insta-love but for me it worked. They are two people, all alone in the world and so they depend on each other. They’re initial exchanges aren’t exactly hostile but neither are they full of love either but that changes. They cover each others backs, save each others lives and hence a bond forms. Their relationship starts blooming and no I love you’s are said. This brings me to the love triangle (which also happened to be strike 1). The love triangle adds a measure of angst that is NOT appreciated. I am a hater of all things love triangle so it’s a wonder I didn’t run in the other direction as soon as it was mentioned. I felt like it was completely unnecessary but this also ties in with something I’ll talk about later. As far as love triangles go, this isn’t actually horrid (if you can look past the amount of angst it adds and how it was completely unnecessary). The female lead actually has a good reason to be confused. It makes complete sense and there isn’t an obvious choice at the moment because Marina herself has no idea what she wants. She doesn’t know who she is and until she figures that out, neither of the guys will come out the victor of her affections. 


My ranting skills will now be unleashed as I talk about strike 2 which was when we learn about the reality of Fades. Up until that point, I thought, no I HOPED that this book wouldn’t go down that road. I thought that for the first time ever, the leaders of the society weren’t out to ruin lives, that they actually meant well but that was all a lie. It was just building up for that supposed big blow. It ruined the whole book for me. I might have been able to swallow the love triangle but this was the last straw for it took what I liked most about this book, and smashed it into pieces. It took away from the dark and scary atmosphere and it almost felt like I was in a rainbows and sunshine land. Where everything is perfect. Where everyone lives in harmony. Well let me tell you something, HELL TO THE NO. Things don’t work like that in the real world. Hell I COMPLETELY understand the supposed villain who I feel like is actually a victim because she is surrounded by brainless people with no sense of self-preservation. Perhaps I am one of those annoying people who think humans are better than everyone else but I am not completely sure about that. There are some things that just aren’t meant to be and the reality about Fades wasn’t. It pissed me off and I just couldn’t. 

I cannot enjoy a book that paints these disease stricken people as good. They destroyed humanity at one point, how did they suddenly turn good, and what the hell are they doing breeding and living in families? Are you telling me that they are human? BECAUSE THEY ARE NOT. Let me repeat that if you didn’t get it the first time around. THEY ARE NOT FUCKING HUMANS and I for one would definitely not want to hang out with them. Now I am not saying the whole family thing is only something humans do, it's just the way it pains these creatures, it feels like they are basically humans with a few 'advantages' and that does NOT work.

(spoiler show)



The whole situation basically ruined the world building for me. I loved the world building up until that point. I was immersed in this world the author had created and then it had to go down the drain because no good things can last. 


It pains me to give this book such a low rating but I cannot say I regret buying it. It does look pretty on my bookshelf. With that said though, I am not completely sure I want to read the sequel. I don’t want to dive back into that world after the ‘twist’ the author threw at us but that may change in the future.

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review 2014-01-05 12:55
Book Review: Arclight by Josin L. McQuein
Arclight - Josin L. McQuein

Holy crap! This book was awesome! Arclight is an astonishingly powerful debut by Josin L. McQuein. Even for someone who usually is weary of thrillers, this sucked me in and had me totally engrossed. With a great group of characters and an imaginative and beautifully depicted world, this book is a keeper.

Let me start right there, with the writing. I adore Josin L. McQuein's writing style. She describes everything with such gripping imagery and just has an amazing way with words. From the very first page, I was immediately impressed. And after having read some YA novels recently where the writing really was nothing to shout about, this made me so happy. You want quotable quotes? Read Arclight, seriously.

"You diminished me beyond words, and fractured me to less than nothing--a single voice pulled from the roar of the wind." -Arclight by Josin L. McQuein


The world she created was also amazingly creative and offered tons of opportunities for her to showcase that lovely writing style. The world is shrouded in the Dark, with monsters called the Fade terrorizing humans. It's hard to describe much more without me giving things away, but it's truly one of the more unique worlds I've read about lately. However, because the world was so complex, sometimes I felt it was hard to understand. While I really loved the writing style, at some points a little less embellishment and a little more clarity would have been appreciated.

I actually really loved so many of the characters, it's ridiculous. Marina strangely touched my heart. Though in the long run her personality may not be so memorable, I really sympathized with her a lot and ..yeah, she was really intriguing to read about, since most of the book covers the mystery of her identity. Tobin was really cool, at least for the first half, and dare I say it, a pretty swoon-worthy boy. But it's mostly about Rue. Rue is awesome. And Rue and Marina, it totally needs to happen.

That being said, the romance here is very light. It's mostly a background thing, and most of the book centers on the mystery/thriller aspect. I suppose one could say this is almost a love triangle, but it's a very complicated situation. However, I loved all of it. Like I just said: Rue and Marina. It touched my heart and it needs to happen. So give me the next book already.

The plot packed a punch with all its mysteries about the world, the Fade, and Marina's identity. I didn't want to stop reading, I just had to know the answers to all my questions. The plot is aptly twisty-turny, and that just makes for a really engaging read. (Also! It wasn't AS scary as I expected. Other bloggers claimed it would be best to read it in the daylight, but I was surprisingly not that scared - which is a good thing, for me, since I get nightmares easily.)


Summing Up:


This was an awesome debut from Josin L. McQuein which gives me high hopes, not only for the sequel, Meridian, but also for the next books she comes up with. Her writing is just amazing and engrossing, and this world was extremely creative. This was just a great read! What more can I say?


GIF it to me straight!



Recommended To:


Fans of thrillers, unique world building, and beautiful writing.


Snuggly Oranges - YA Book Blog

Source: wp.me/p47Ub9-12
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review 2013-09-24 00:00
Arclight - Josin L. McQuein Arclight is the story of Marina, a girl who is rescued from The Dark. Yes, with the capital D. The Dark is the post-apocalyptic danger-land outside of the Arc, which is a haven perpetually lit by the brightest lights known to man. The lights are needed to protect the settlement from the Fade: creepy-scary-shape-changing monsters that break in and steal the Arclight's people, then turn them into more Fade's. There's nothing worse than your people being turned into the very monsters you might one day kill - or be killed by.

Marina is treated as an outcast, and she feels like one-she has no memory of who she was before she was rescued, if her family is alive or dead, if they even loved her, and no one is revealing any secrets to her. When she helps to capture a rogue Fade Marina inadvertently starts a chain of events that will lead to her following that Fade into the Dark to discover secrets about her life, her friends, and the Arclight that she never thought possible.

Arclight is an exciting story, with twists and turns through the Dark and the Arc, leading you to surprises about the dystopian world, its characters, and its future that. . .you really might figure out before the end. Okay, it is a little predictable, but in a way it is really reassuring, because if I know who the girl is going to end up with and that she's going to want to save the world I won't be disappointed at the end, and I know there will be a sequel. Marina comes off as a bit whiny, but I suspect teens won't notice because she might sound like them - doubtful, worried, anxious. Overall it was a great book and I'm looking forward to the sequel!
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